Sunday, 18 September 2016

Open Forum - Fall/winter 2016 forum

The 45th anniversary of the Toronto Sun will be marked on Nov. 1, 2016. Have your say on the anniversary or any other Sun-related topic.

108 comments:

  1. What is happening with LFP, thought they were closing print site

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    1. Well the new page size and print job look wonderful. Sorry so many lost their jobs because of it, but it looks so much better.

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  2. I left the Sun over 4 months ago and haven't looked back. There is a life/career out there where you don't live in fear of closing any day. Good luck to all. For those who must stay, I really do hope for all of YOU there is much success in their future.

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  3. newsroom closed at 24 hours Vancouver

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  4. and so it starts
    http://globalnews.ca/news/3015786/postmedia-to-slash-salary-expenses-by-20-through-buyouts-possible-layoffs/

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    1. 20% is huge, not a good way to head to Christmas. Seems like the ol' Sun Media days. I think they'll be surprised at the number wanting to get out. I'm already to go, but helps that I have a job to go to as well.

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  5. The real problem thus far is that anyone who knew anything about the smaller community size papers have all been let go. Someone must understand that the local people now the markets they live and work in, sell advertising to as well as sell newspapers. We've been left with Toronto telling us what is good for OUR market, guess what it hasn't and won't work. Too late to turn back now. We've all been working like dogs, increased workload, no extra pay other than to be told to work harder. Well I think they might end up with more than 20% wanting to leave with a cheque in hand. Enough is enough.

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  6. Wonderful. Paul Godfrey back for 3 more years. Kinda like hiring the bus driver that keeps getting lost, yet another great move. Glad I'm leaving.

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  7. Any word on how the buyouts are being received? Are there enough volunteers to cover the 20 per cent cut? Otherwise, could be a very grim, Quebecor-like Christmas.

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  8. I know when I turned mine in, they were a little shocked. Apparently they don't have to accept it if you are considered a "key" person.

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    1. Is there anyone "that is a worker" left that is not key?

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    2. I was being sarcastic. So few left, to lose anyone at this point will just create more issues. For those that might be left (hopefully not me) I wish you all the very best of luck. Sadly this is just the beginning to a rapid end, there is nothing to re-negotiate or anything to sell. So in the end body count is all that is left.

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    3. Me too, that is the point everyone left is key. How can they make a decision who isn't. Oh easy, they don't have to do the extra work load that the people that are left have to do.

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  9. Starting Nov. 13, Fort McMurray Today will scale back their Monday to Friday plus free Saturday tabloid publishing schedule to just Tuesday and Friday plus a new Thursday edition called Fort McMurray This Week. http://www.fortmcmurraytoday.com/2016/11/08/editors-note-exciting-changes-coming-to-the-today-print-edition

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  10. It's been two days since the deadline. Anybody have any news?

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    1. The deadline was extended

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    2. People are saying their goodbyes.

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    3. Twenty took buyouts at the National Post newsroom. Any names from Sun papers?

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    4. Anybody know who's gone from Postmedia News Service in Hamilton?

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  11. Old news, but it appears the Postmedia printing plant in Kingsville has been shut down with the work being sent to an independently owned print shop in neighbouring Leamington.
    As I understand it, many of the workers from Kingsville did hook on with the independent Leamington operation, which is owned by Jim Heyens and Sheila McBrayne.

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  12. Was Peter Conradi in NIagara a buyout or did he leave on his own?

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    1. Probably both.

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    2. He is going to New Brunswick to be ME of the Daily Gleaner. That makes it three former Niagara journos within the last few months who have moved to New Brunswick for work.

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    3. Knowing Peter, he saw what was happening — or going to be happening — to the papers in Niagara and didn't want to be a part of it.

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  13. PM workers are LIVID over this
    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/postmedia-executives-receive-23-million-in-bonuses/article33009649/

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  14. While some are considering buyouts, PM lets the bonuses flow to execs.

    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/postmedia-executives-receive-23-million-in-bonuses/article33009649/

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    1. I'm sure the rest of us will also be getting a retention bonus any minute now.......and the Maple Leafs will win the Stanley Cup this year.

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    2. Retention bonus for Godrey? Who would hire away a 77-year-old running a company into the ground? Despicable!

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    3. What a slap in the face (like we haven't been before) Some are sitting reading this thinking, optics? Are you kidding me? Godfrey went hat in hand looking for money from the feds, then must have forgotten to tell them part of that money was for his wallet. This is more than a slap it's a kick in the teeth to EVERY person working for this organization, and I use that term loosely. Even now the 20% reduction means valuable staff that actually do the work will be gone, the ones left will have to pick up the few pieces still remaining. Yet again Merry Christmas everyone, don't bother to put up a tree or decorate, no one around to take it down.

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  15. This:
    http://ipolitics.ca/2016/11/24/national-post-going-digital-only-memo-bb/

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    1. Wow. Then I must be a trend setter. :0) I used to edit two community papers for Sun Media. Left and started a print community independent operation in 2014 with my wife. We switched to digital only in 2015. (https://www.facebook.com/McLeodRiverPost/). Income plummeted but profits rose and continue to rise as people get used to the idea. Still have some way to go but we think we are going the right way.

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    2. We have a local indie paper in our market and they are kicking our butt. No one can concentrate on the job when you're not sure if you're still going to have it in a couple of weeks. Chat in the office is that not enough put in for the buyout, so layoffs will no doubt be in the offing. Merry freakin Christmas yet again.

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    3. Newspapers aren’t doomed to go the way of the dodo bird. Online marketing experts ay that ad blockers effects on online advertisers has been “tremendous” with advertising organizations estimating that by 202 $35 billion per year will be lost to online businesses as a result of blocked ads. Did you catch that? By 202 $35 billion per year will be lost to online businesses as a result of blocked ads.
      People see installing ad blockers as a way to regain control of their online experience – ad free. Newspapers won’t die. People said they would when telegraphs came on scene, then radio, then TV, then Internet. Start your own publication in your market but don’t be online only. It’s really not the solution.

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    4. I concur. But we're not online. We're digital. We have a large subscriber base across four counties. Subscribers receive the paper by email for free. We also encourage subscribers to share, which they do. One says he shares with 300 willing contacts. We also publish the paper to PressReader and Facebook where it can be downloaded. Customers that advertise have their ad linked to their website, email or social media, whichever they prefer. We are not affected by ad blockers whatsoever. The paper can be read on pretty much any device. We just don't print and distribute anymore and are free of all the costs and headaches that go with it.

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    5. This is why SunMedia and Postmedia have been failing all this time. Denial of reality. "Stick to print" has been the rallying cry. There are ways to put advertising on the internet that adblockers don't block. Look into them, get innovative, go with the future instead of the rapidly collapsing (and now mostly collapsed) past. Online IS working, for some who aren't trying to apply print rules to it.

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    6. Ian I appreciate your input. I will look into PressReader. I started a weekly newspaper more than two years ago after being cut by Sun Media and it makes a profit. We distribute a print free edition and a free email distribution. We also link customers' ads from our website to their Facebook pages or websites. Just wondering how advertisers received a digital only paper?

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    7. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  16. So the story says who's gone from the NP. Any word at the Toronto Sun, which is in the same building? Or other Suns for that matter?

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  17. The fact is, this is nothing new in the land of corporate media. And the outrage will certainly fall on deaf ears and an indifferent public.

    I know for a fact that after every Christmas massacre during the Quebecor years, executives and senior suits (publishers, EICs and ad managers) got hefty end-of-year bonuses.

    Godfrey and Co., just like PKP and his yes-men before them, are cashing out before the ship completely goes under.

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  18. Yes if they didn't take those bonuses they could save every job they are cutting. They could give everyone a raise (remember those?)and probably still have some money left over. God knows "most" workers get paid very little. 3 days to find out if they reached their target of the buyout or if there will be layoffs. Nice.

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  19. https://www.thebeaverton.com/2016/11/postmedia-re-hires-laid-off-journalists-cater-office-christmas-party/
    WHAT?? Could this be real, servers? WOW

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    1. The Beaverton is a comedy site. Or at least tries to be.

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  20. 48 gone at Postmedia Editorial Services in Hamilton.

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  21. Just heard on Friday that remaining Ad Production Artists at Edmonton Journal/Sun are being laid off, about 5 or 6 total. Anyone able to confirm

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  22. Should have said that these were 6 Graphic Designers at the Edmonton Journal/Sun. Last day is December 16. All Online and Print Ad production is being centralized in Ontario. But mostly done in the Phillipines.
    Fun fact: When offshoring of ad production started some years ago (after Postmedia took over) it cost the Journal $25,000 per month

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  23. Did anyone think this process was going to work well given the past projects that have come up. Total mess. They should have just said that they were closing places and be done with it. Oh and if they didn't notice how this affected staff moral...well it made it WORSE than it already was. Advertisers have been asking if we're even going to be printing a daily anymore. So people are noticing on the outside looking in.

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  24. Curious. There are reports of buyouts at the PM broadsheets - the Post (25 people out of editorial), the Herald, the Journal. But nothing so far from any of the Suns (although in Ottawa, Edmonton and Calgary, the newsrooms are merged, so it's murkier). Any cuts coming at the Toronto Sun or Canoe? Or Winnipeg? Did the former Sun Media escape the 20 per cent reduction in salary or is the worst to come?

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  25. This just in: 6 journalists take buyouts at Winnipeg Sun. #DeathofJournalism #media #doomed #MBpoli

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  26. Welland tribune office told on Friday they now work out of St. Catharines starting Monday. People at Tribune building Monday emptying the contents as the building is sold and changes hands on Friday..

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  27. Lloydminister Meridian Booster was sold today. Not sure to whom.

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  28. Edmonton Sun:
    Tony Blais - Court Reporter

    Source:
    http://blog.mastermaq.ca/2016/12/12/media-monday-edmonton-update-232/

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  29. For anyone who has accepted a buyout or knows other staff who did: what was it like when you found out it was accepted? Did the company give you any notice? Do they just e-mail you and tell you you're done? Or does your boss find out first and then tells you what's happening?

    We have several people in our office who are waiting to find out what is going on with VBO applications and are totally in the dark about what to expect.

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    1. how about mass confusion on how they are going to reduce 20% salaries and still keep the boat afloat? Not a clue other than this is why the company is in the position it is in, no clue to the reader or advertising climate in the towns and cities they claim to be so proud to cover. I'd say turn out the lights but no one knows who's gonna be the last, or first one out. Just sad at Christmas to put people through this.

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  30. Our group has three (in three different offices) who applied. An ad director informed one of the staffers by phone that she was not accepted. Talking with a sister daily, who are waiting to find out if any or all of their applications are accepted, all wonder how this ad director knew of one of his group. Frustrating times for all!

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  31. Layoffs:
    2 graphic artists at the Edmonton Sun

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    1. 2 months shy of 35 years at the sun for me and 22 for the other artist, lost 4 on Journal side and I think all of Calgary creative gone as well. Lots of great memories from the old Edmonton Sun days

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  32. No confusion at all...work harder, with less oh and Merry Christmas, Happy New Year. Yet again another nerve wracking holiday season brought to you by Sun Media oops Post Media, same outfit, just different hat.

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  33. Replies
    1. I'm sure that former MPP Tony Ruprecht won't shed a tear. Who here remembers that attempted hatchet job she tried to do on him back in 2006. At least she got a couple days paid in Cuba. She must be so proud.

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  34. Long time Sun cartoonist Sue Dewar is done as of Monday. Retirement, or packaged off?

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  35. If post media was slashing 20. % of their force that amounts to around 800 people. Even including a potential80 for the hamilton hub which sounds quite high where is the other 720. Heard about 40 thru this site and none announced elsewhere. Is there a gag order out there or are they still working thru the process.

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  36. Postmedia layoffs expected in Vancouver in January 2017. Don't be surprised when layoffs hit other papers that didn't reach the 20% buyout.

    https://www.biv.com/article/2016/12/newsroom-layoffs-expected-hit-province-vancouver-s/

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  37. Well, let's count it up...

    25 or so gone from the Post
    There were maybe 7-10 positions eliminated from the TO Sun, including Canoe staffers.

    Odds and ends from Winn, Calgary, Edmonton (less than 10 apiece)

    Half dozen from Regina, about that from Saskatoon...

    Yeah, doesn't look like they hit their target, does it?

    (Granted, those are newsroom numbers, so the number increases when you consider graphic artists and production folks, etc)

    So enjoy the xmas break. It ain't over.


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  38. Advertising -

    Edmonton Sun:
    2 Graphic Artists

    Edmonton Journal:
    4 Graphic Artists:
    1 Production Artist
    2 Management Types
    1 Digital Manager

    Building Maintenance:
    1

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  39. Four leaving St. Catharines Standard on buyouts - reporter, sports editor, sports reporter (meaning no sports department) and news editor. And another reporter leaving for a job at Brock U.

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    1. That depends on whether it is the standard itself or some of the other papers (Welland, Niagara Falls) as they all work out of one site now.. so dumping a sports editor for welland, and keeping bernie, for example, would maintain some sports presence... Bernie is already tackling the wider area to start with after the falls sports was decimated... interesting nonetheless.

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  40. Our office contacted Michelle in HR at Godfrey's office (cause we have been in the dark for far too long on this VBO) and she told us everyone will know by Jan. 6th

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    1. Seems like everything that PM touches is a long drawn out and painful process. Someone somewhere just pull the trigger already will ya?

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    2. I'm wondering how long they can keep those of us who have applied for the VBO hanging? Communication in these regards are extremely poor, thanks for sharing the Jan 6th info, had no idea.

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    3. One of our directors told a staffer today if she has not heard by noon January 6th- to call him. We are thinking if she has not heard by noon--she should call Godfrey's office and talk to that Michelle!

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  41. Post clearly says Standard (Bernie, Bill P. Don Fraser, Gord Howard). Mike D. and Tony R. leaving the Review. No buyouts at Tribune, at least not yet. They have to be thinking going down to one regional newspaper in Niagara.

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    1. wonder why it's taken them this long to thing regional papers? They talked about this back in the Stun Media days. There are a few other areas as well that there had been talks about amalgamation, back in the day.

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  42. At the Edmonton Sun/Journal advertising dept.:
    One of the more interesting items I heard about the VBOs was that if you did not put your name forward and you were subsequently laid off, then you received a much reduced payment. The result of this was that almost everyone put their names in and some were surprised when they were told they were being laid off.
    Really forcing people out.

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  43. This is unbelievable! Or is it!! A staffer here from the advertising department called HR in Godreys office to ask about her VBO. She just received a call at 2 pm on January 6th saying the person looking after the ad people for the VBO was on a two week vacation and will let her know her fate on Monday. Are you freaking kidding us!!

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    1. What about editorial staff? We have reporters/editors still waiting for news of their VBO applications and have heard absolutely nothing so far...

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    2. Not one bit surprised. No wonder they have the problems they have. Just flip the damn coin already and make the decision. Boil it down folks, 99 million last quarter, not a real numbers guy but based on the very small ad count, another 99 million in the hole for the next quarter?

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  44. Sadly if they closed down a couple of newspapers...people wouldn't even notice. Circ is so low, wouldn't be missed

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  45. Of all the layoffs, i'm wondering who is now working at a different paper?

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  46. Been said before, remember folks when you're telling someone how bad the other paper is? Well I'm here to tell you the other paper won't forget.

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  47. Here's another part of this game. People are leaving after being denied VBO so the mess is getting worse. Oh they can hire to replace, not sure how that works but really? layoff a whack of people (supposedly) then start hiring again? What's up with that?

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    1. A couple things--Godfrey says everyone now knows their fate and I am aware of at least two employees who have been told to wait; one until today, the other at the end of the month. This VBO was done so poorly. Why did they give people an opportunity to apply, knowing they would not qualify? Why didn't they take some leadership and tell whomever they thought would save them money-they were done? You are correct in saying some who didn't get it are quitting anyway--so how did that help?

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    2. Don't think it helped the company, but this entire VBO just pissed everyone off. From the beginning really until just now, people didn't know what the hell was going on. Now that is might be done, now come layoffs because they didn't get enough participation? Wow the creditors and the advertisers should see how messed up this whole thing was/is. Going to lead to more angry people and when they do leave very vindictive against the people they thought might have had their backs. Guess what folks, everyone for themselves. At least the Titanic gave people a slim chance at survival, no such luck with PM.

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  48. Fresh off today's quarterly report....
    - Revenue fell 14 per cent, print advertising 22 per cent and print circulation nine percent.
    - PM did not meet its 20 percent salary reduction target. (coughlayoffscough)
    - The company will also undertake "ongoing cost reduction initiatives".(coughlayoffscough)

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  49. In Niagara there are 21 reporters putting out 3 dailies. We are losing 6 people - closer to 30 per cent than the 20 per cent they talked about. Are other newsrooms being hit that hard? We'll be left with one lonely sports reporter covering a population of about 400,000 people.

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    1. How do they not evolve and put it under one regional banner? There is so much shared content and similar page layouts as it is now... with what little paid advertising appears, you have to wonder why it hasn't already happened.... wishing those left standing the very best in what will no doubt be difficult - especially if they undergo more cost cutting.

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    2. Many dailies have no sports reporters now. Also, it's increasingly rare to see a daily with more than three reporters except for in the extremely large markets. So the fact that Niagara is left with roughly five reporters per daily is still generous (I use that term lightly) compared to other dailies in the Sun Media part of the chain. Not trying to be rude... just thought some perspective might help.

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    3. Belleville puts out four publications and they are losing three from the eleven they currently have.

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  50. Where and when does the chopping begin?

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  51. Made money last quarter so maybe they'll wait till it gets worse again. All this has/will do is dilute the pool of workers. Stories won't be covered, ad sales won't be done, papers won't be delivered. Hmmm seems like this is gonna be more of a disaster than anyone could imagine. So few workers will ultimately mean closing entire publications.

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  52. Godfrey said he expects the latest round of chopping to be done, or underway, by March.

    Remember, they only made money last quarter because of their debt deal. Revenue was still down dramatically.

    Feels like everything they do at this point is to ensure they can give themselves a few more years of big executive bonuses. There's no saving the company.

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  53. Mark Cressman in Niagara and John Tobon both leaving to head to New Brunswick. Jump now people while there is still room on the life boat.

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  54. Has this been made public yet?

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    1. Yup, just saw it on the internet on a public website.

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  55. What website was it if you remember?

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    1. http://torontosunfamily.blogspot.ca/2016/09/open-forum-fall-2016.html#comment-form

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  56. Disappointment...when you filled out the VBO and it is rejected and the happiness to those that left that they are out of the mess.

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  57. Reports just out seating a dozen editorial workers in total laid off from The Ottawa Citizen and the Montreal Gazette. It begins...

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    1. Can also confirm John Stewart Ottawa AD Director and Stephane LeGal Ad VP from Montreal are leaving.

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  58. Company plans to cut 15 positions at the Ottawa Citizen and Montreal Gazette newspapers: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/montreal/montreal-gazette-ottawa-citizen-lose-15-positions-in-postmedia-layoff-1.3950774

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  59. Windsor too...

    http://ipolitics.ca/2017/01/24/postmedia-serves-layoff-notices-at-ottawa-citizen-montreal-gazette/

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  60. From the Belleville Intelligencer, Trentonian, Community Press and County Weekly News: http://www.intelligencer.ca/2017/01/26/w-brice-mcvicar-saying-goodbye-to-friends

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  61. Rumours are swirling that reporters will be put into a regional reporting pod and be reporting for several newspapers instead of only the one they are at now. I can see it happening. We are going to be so short on reporters come next month that we can't report news or cover vacations with what will be left, unless a regional pod model is started

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    1. Look for regional newspapers to follow shortly afterwards. Profits are still falling on ad revenue and circulation declines, it's all they will have left to do.

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  62. http://torontolife.com/city/business/qa-paul-godfrey-ceo-whos-presiding-postmedia-newspaper-chains-rapid-decline/
    Wow just wow.

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  63. The quiet is deafening. If you're like our paper, we're all in shock that things have gone from bad to worse. Ok not real shock but..well words just don't do this mess any justice.

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